ACTION EXPRESS RACING PUTS BOTH CARS IN THE TOP-5 IN THE TEQUILA PATRÓN SPORTS CAR SHOWCASE
Long Beach, Cali. (April 18, 2015) – Action Express Racing kept their top-5 streak intact in the 100-minute Tequila Patrón Sports Car Showcase on the legendary Long Beach street course, with the Whelen/Team Fox Corvette DP finishing fourth and the Mustang Sampling Corvette in fifth.
Christian Fittipaldi qualified and started the race from the third position, and ran solidly in the top-5 throughout the first half of the race. Teammate Eric Curran shadowed Fittipaldi the entire first stint as the two drivers turned lap times matching the leaders.
After Dane Cameron assumed control of the Whelen/Team Fox DP he posted the fastest lap of the race (1:15.682) enroute to the fourth place finish. The speed and finish were encouraging to Cameron, as the team has continued to show steady improvement over the first three races of the 2015 season.
“We had a fast car all weekend,” said Cameron. “Track position is key at Long Beach, so we had to fight hard all day. We were able to pick up one position from where we started, but more importantly we had a solid race where we didn’t encounter bad luck.
“From where we started the season at Daytona and where we are now it’s really exciting. The communication is great and it feels like everyone has jelled. I think the best is yet to come for everyone on the Whelen Corvette.”
For the Mustang Sampling Corvette the fifth place finish was another step in their quest to repeat as TUDOR United SportsCar Champions.
“We had a good car this weekend,” said João Barbosa. “It wasn’t a great car, but it was solid and had good speed. You always want to be on the podium, but sometimes you have to take a solid finish and move on to the next event.
“We had another top-5 finish and once again were able to complete all the laps. The team is strong and we’ll go over our notes and continue to get stronger each race throughout the season.”
The Tequila Patrón Sports Car Showcase marked the eight consecutive race in which Barbosa and Fittipaldi have finished inside the top-5, a streak dating back to the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen in 2014. The No. 5 Mustang Sampling Corvette has only one finish outside the top-5 (sixth – Detroit, 2014) in the TUDOR Championship era.
The Mustang Sampling Corvette team continued their streak of completing every mile of competition (10,569) since the merger of the GRAND-AM and American Le Mans Series.
“Finishing races and finishing them in the top-5 is always important,” said team manager Gary Nelson. “Our team put together a solid race weekend at a difficult race track. The competition is always improving and as a team we’re going to continue to work on getting stronger each race.”
“It was a great day for our partners at Chevrolet placing all four Corvette DPs in the top-5,” said team owner Bob Johnson. “We didn’t get the win, but both cars were competitive and it was a solid day for our team.”
The Mustang Sampling Corvette DP unofficially maintains a three-point lead in the IMSA TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, while the Whelen Corvette is fourth in the standings as the series moves to Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca for the fourth event of the 2015 season.